New York Theft Crime Defense Lawyer
New York’s larceny statute covers a wide range of prohibited conduct. Theft crimes covered by the larceny statute include basic theft as well as embezzlement, larceny by trick, false pretenses, and taking property by way of extortion. The potential charges and punishments vary depending on the alleged conduct and the value of the property taken, ranging from misdemeanors to serious felonies punishable by extended jail time.
If you’ve been arrested for a theft crime in New York, it’s important to get an experienced New York theft crime defense lawyer on your team as soon as possible. The longer you wait to hire a seasoned attorney, the harder it will be to put up a proper defense and avoid the worst possible consequences of a conviction. The seasoned theft crime defense lawyers at Dupée & Monroe have years of experience helping clients fight back against the most serious theft crime charges, including getting charges reduced or dropped entirely. If a favorable plea bargain with reduced charges is possible, we will make sure you get it. If the prosecution is pursuing false or overly aggressive charges, we will fight for your rights all the way through trial and beyond.
Elements of Larceny
In New York, the base crime of larceny occurs when a defendant:
- Wrongfully takes, obtains, or withholds property
- From the property’s rightful owner
- With the intent of depriving the rightful owner of the property
Property is defined very broadly to include any kind of tangible or intangible thing of value. Property can be money, personal property, real estate, computer data, legal proofs of debt, contracts, or any other thing of value. A “wrongful taking” can occur by traditional theft as well as by force, trick, embezzlement, false pretenses, extortion, knowingly keeping lost property, or any other wrongful means to acquire someone else’s property.
Petit Larceny and Misdemeanor Charges
If the theft crime is pursued as a misdemeanor, the prosecution will likely charge either petit larceny (Penal Law Section 155.25) or criminal possession of stolen property in the fifth degree (Penal Law Section 165.40). Petit larceny applies to theft of $1,000 or less.
Both of these crimes are chargeable as class A misdemeanors, punishable by up to a year in jail and/or a $1,000 fine (or double the amount the defendant gained from the crime). Defendants convicted of a class A misdemeanor can also face probation for two or three years.
Degrees of Grand Larceny
As the value of property stolen increases, or if certain other factors about the circumstances of the crime apply, the theft is punishable as grand larceny. The lowest level of grand larceny is a class E felony, while higher levels are punishable as more serious felonies with more severe consequences.
Grand Larceny in the Fourth Degree applies to stolen property valued over $1,000, as well as thefts involving firearms, extortion by way of threat to a person’s reputation or business, motor vehicles, or theft of a credit card. Fourth-degree grand larceny is a Class E felony, punishable by up to four years in prison and up to $5,000 in fines (or double the defendant’s gain from the crime).
Grand Larceny in the Third Degree applies to stolen property valued over $3,000 or theft from an ATM. Third-degree grand larceny is a Class D felony, punishable by up to seven years in prison.
Grand Larceny in the Second Degree applies to stolen property valued over $50,000, as well as theft by extortion involving a threat of physical harm, property damage, or abuse of one’s position as a public servant. Second-degree grand larceny is a Class C felony, punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
Grand Larceny in the First Degree applies to stolen property valued over a million dollars. First-degree grand larceny is a Class B felony, punishable by up to 25 years in prison.
Sentence Enhancement for Repeat Offenders
Defendants who have prior convictions for grand larceny can face enhanced penalties. For example, a defendant convicted of fourth-degree grand larceny who already has a grand larceny conviction is subject to a mandatory minimum prison sentence of three years.
Related Crimes and Offenses
In addition to petit larceny and grand larceny, New York law penalizes a wide range of theft-related conduct. Specific charges vary in terms of the required elements and the possible penalties. Related crimes include:
- Credit card fraud
- Criminal possession of stolen property
- Identify theft
- Issuing bad checks
Whatever the nature of your charges, the New York seasoned theft crime defense legal team at Dupée & Monroe is ready to help.
Get Help from a Hudson Valley Theft Crime Defense Lawyer
If you have been arrested and charged with a theft crime under New York state law, contact Dupée & Monroe, P.C. for a larceny defense lawyer in Goshen. We represent clients charged with petit larceny, grand larceny, and other serious offenses in Orange County and throughout the Hudson Valley.